Marco Rubio’s Dangerous Game

BY BUDDY NEVINS

 

 

U. S. Sen. Marco Rubio is playing a dangerous game.

The game is called Marco’s Running For President and it trumps every anything else in Rubio’s life.

As a representative of a state regularly pummeled by hurricanes, Rubio should know that voting against Sandy storm relief hurts real people.

Still, what counts to Rubio is his political career.

With his name on every pundit’s lips as a possible presidential candidate, he must keep himself ideologically pure to remain in the GOP mix. Republican primaries punish any candidate voting for federal spending.

That’s the real reason that when the Sandy relief bill came up, he voted “no”.

In doing so, Marco Rubio played politics with peoples’ lives.

His excuse: It contained a lot of pet projects unrelated to Sandy.

First of all, pet projects to Rubio are jobs and necessary government functions to others.

Second of all, the people in New Jersey, New York and other hard-hit areas need the money.  It doesn’t matter if the bill funds the opera.  They need money now.

I guess Rubio’s own future is more important than people in need.

At least Rubio is consistent.  Earlier this year when he voted against the Gulf Coast Restoration Act for regions affected by the BP spill.

He gave the same reason: needless pet projects.

The Tampa Bay Times said Rubio was the only Gulf state senator, including Republicans, who voted against the relief bill. He did so after Grover Norquist said that spending offsets in the bill violated the anti-tax pledge Rubio signed.

So he didn’t care about the Florida Gulf Coast relief from an oil spill if it could interfere with his own political agenda.  In that light, the Sandy vote is no surprise.

I just hope we don’t have a hurricane and depend on Rubio’s vote for relief.

XXXXX

Here is Rubio’s blog post explaining his vote last week against aid for Sandy victims:

 

By Senator Marco Rubio

 

Last month, I watched with great sadness as Hurricane Sandy hit various eastern seaboard states and destroyed towns, property and lives.  While Florida was spared the worst damage seen in the northeast, given Sandy’s sheer size and trajectory, even our state experienced some damage.

As a Floridian, I am all too familiar with the impact of storms like this and offered my prayers that the people impacted by Sandy would find strength in God’s love and the company of their loved ones in its aftermath.

From a public policy standpoint, I have always believed one of the most critical roles of any government is to help people impacted by natural disasters. Effective coordination between local, state and federal governments are vital to helping people and starting the clean-up and rebuilding process. Swift, smart action can make a huge difference in difficult times like these. 

That’s why I’ve made clear in the past that emergency assistance bills like this should be handled with a sense of urgency and should not be derailed by efforts to find spending cuts to offset them, for example. When people are suffering gravely because of natural disasters, every moment we delay is a moment of delayed relief for victims.

However, we do have a responsibility to make sure this emergency spending is ultimately going to disaster relief, and not to other pet projects. Unfortunately, the Hurricane Sandy supplemental bill goes far beyond emergency relief to impacted victims and communities, which is why I voted no on final passage.

For example, it includes spending for fishery projects in Alaska, money to fix museum roofs in Washington, D.C., money to plant trees around the country, and money for a water resources priority study, among other measures.  It calls for $818 million for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), $336 million for Amtrak and $482 million for National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) – all amounts exponentially greater than originally requested by the White House. Despite several votes on amendments intended to strip out this excess, unrelated spending and return the bill to its original purpose of helping families and communities impacted by Hurricane Sandy, the final bill went far beyond that.

In sum, the current spending bill goes far beyond emergency relief and all efforts to strip the bill of unrelated pork are being blocked. As a result, I cannot support it.  Instead, I support a cleaner alternative version proposed by Senator Dan Coats (R-IN) that costs less by keeping the focus on people and communities impacted by Hurricane Sandy.

 



22 Responses to “Marco Rubio’s Dangerous Game”

  1. Christine says:

    Hopefully this fiasco with the Sandy Relief Act with finally push the lunatic Teabaggers back into the fringe elements from whence they came. Don’t let the door hit you on the way out!

  2. Independent says:

    You left out that he was one of only 8 Senators to vote against the Tax Bill to avoid the Fiscal Cliff.

    If it was up to him, everyone today would be paying higher taxes, the country would go back into a recession and the stock markets would have been crashing. So everyone would lose.

    For someone trying to be more moderate at times, he continuously shows how extreme right wing he is.

  3. What Would Reagan Do? says:

    Why do you evil people want to take millions of dollars away from those unfortunate Hurricane victims just to plant trees and fix the Smithsonian roof? Do you think trees are more important than helping these poor people? Why are you three against giving these poor people the full $60.4 billion? You don’t care about the poor and obviously you are all racist, calling out a Senator simply because he is of Hispanic descent.

  4. Ha Ha Ha says:

    How To Raise Taxes: Think Eisenhower!!!

    Quoting J.J. Goldberg at forward.com:  
      
    [...] Eisenhower inherited a top marginal income tax rate of 92% from his predecessor Harry Truman when he entered the White House in 1953. He quickly lowered it to 91%, where it stayed until Lyndon Johnson lowered it again to 77% in 1964 and then 70% in 1965.  
      
    During his eight years in the White House, Eisenhower managed to reduce the federal deficit by 75% — down to a quarter of the size he inherited — while building the Interstate Highway System and launching America’s space program. GDP growth averaged 3% per year. Unemployment averaged just under 5.5%.  
      
    Reagan, entering office in 1981, inherited Johnson’s 70% top marginal income tax rate and immediately lowered it to 50%, then to 38.5% and finally to 28%. His theory was that high taxes stifle economic growth, while lowering taxes unleashes growth and creates jobs. It was a great national experiment, and the result was conclusive: It didn’t work. Growth averaged 3.4% per year during Reagan’s presidency, hardly better than Eisenhower’s, while unemployment averaged a shocking 7.43%, far worse than Eisenhower’s and hardly better than the much-maligned Obama record. [...]  
      
    So the next time you listen to a presidential debate, remember that nobody up there is taking the Democratic side. The debate we’re having today is between a robust Reaganism and a faint, timid echo of Eisenhower Republicanism. In fact, when you get down to it, the Democrats can’t even bring themselves to take Eisenhower’s side with any conviction. We’re all touting variations on a flimflam theory that’s been tried and proven a colossal failure.

    ——–

    How To Cut Spending: End Corporate Welfare!!!     
        
    As Rex Nutting of Marketwatch noted in his 12/18/2012 article “Why isn’t Obama demanding corporate welfare cuts?”, “$2.6 trillion could be saved [...] It’s possible to achieve all the budget savings we need for the next 10 years simply by cutting the fat out of discretionary spending programs and tax expenditures [removing all of the corporate welfare] without raising tax rates on the wealthy or cutting the safety net at all.”     
         
    Oil and gas companies, which are raking in record profits, certainly don’t need $4 billion a year in subsidies, and even the oil company CEOs admit they don’t need it!     
         
    Why are cuts to Social Security and Medicare even being discussed while literally billions in corporate welfare are constantly spilling out of the Treasury? 
        
    White House petition to End Corporate Welfare: http://wh.gov/Qa6f

  5. Real Deal says:

    This was an ill advised, divisive and pointless ideological grandstand that further cements his credential as unable to see the forest from the trees on nearly any issue.

    It is bad for Florida because it makes it more difficult for his state to seek emergency relief the next time we are torn apart by a terrible storm.

    With this vote, Rubio firmly cements himself as the poster child of ultra conservatism which has again and again been rejected by the voters of this nation. There is nothing at all we have seen from him that remotely qualifies as moderate and his no vote on the fiscal cliff resolution only serves to underscore that point.

  6. ExCompassionate Conservative says:

    Well, at least Rubio can say that he left the Cuban Castro dictatorship so he could freely choose to be dictated to by an American like Grover Norquist.

  7. Chaz Stevens, Genius says:

    @3

    You worry about millions for a roof…

    Where were you when your people voted for TRILLIONS for those two wars? Or the TRILLION dollar tax reduction (done with the budget reconciliation act).

    Please, just shut the fuck up.

  8. Brec member says:

    Interesting perspective on this issue can be found in today’s Miami Herald letters to the editor:
    “Re the Dec. 31 article, For County, what’s in a name?: The 1997 renaming of Dade County was a scam to get more name recognition, not for the county, but for Metro-Dade Mayor Alex Penelas in his failed bid for state office.
    I suspect something similar is going on here. Broward has been perfectly OK for a long time. Leave it alone”
    –Robert Keiser, South Miami”

  9. Kevin says:

    These sorts of votes (which most “normal” people will have long forgotten by late 2015 int he runup to the early primary and caucus states), are red meat thrown to the lunatic fringe of the GOP (which, as Buddy implies, makes up an enormous part of the REP primary base in Iowa and the South). It probably won’t work in open-primary states like NH, but in the last few cycles NH has lost some importance.

    This indicates to me that Marco is seriously going to make an all-out play for Iowa 2016.

  10. Stone Cold's Bottom Line says:

    He is not a good man… period….

    and that’s ‘da bottom line ‘cuz Stone Cold says so!

  11. Duke says:

    Marco Rubio is a Jeb Bush protege. He will never be president. He lacks mass appeal and Hispanics see right through him.

  12. Floridan says:

    This is the problem almost all GOP presidential contenders face — they can’t win the primaries without appealing to the extreme right, thus creating a paper and video) trail that, as the party’s nominee, they overcome as they reach for the middle. The Romney syndrome.

  13. Another view says:

    Instead of “In doing so, Marco Rubio played politics with peoples’ lives.”

    how about

    “In doing so, Democrats played politics with peoples’ lives by taking what should be a simple funding bill intended to help Sandy victims and instead loading it up with pork projects for special interests to buy themselves votes in future elections.”

    FROM BUDDY:

    I appreciate your contribution. I have a different view.

    I guess you mean the $17 billion to finance housing and businesses destroyed in the storm. Or $11 billion to rebuild and harden transit and roads in the area. Or $5 billion in flood control.

    When Katrina hit seven years ago, the House voted $60 billion in aid in ten days.

    Today’s House Republicans and some GOP Senators are a different, more ideological bunch. There were voted for Allen West for Speaker, although he is no longer in the House. Need I add anything else.

  14. Jim Kale from the Villages says:

    This is a needy guy from Cuba! He will everything to promote himself and his own political career. He does not care about citizens of Florida.

    This is great shame that a person like him representing us in the US Senate. He could not be there if Kendrick Meek (the great stupid) withdrew from the race and supported Christ as recommended by former President Clinton

  15. fla cracker says:

    Are you KIDDING ME?! He voted NO. What a d-bag.

  16. Christine says:

    @14

    He could not be there if Kendrick Meek (the great stupid) withdrew from the race and supported Christ as recommended by former President Clinton.

    Do you really think Meek’s religous orientation had anything to do with the election results?

  17. Balls of Fire says:

    14’s typo brought out the knee slapper in 16. That’s a bingo.

  18. What Would Reagan Do? says:

    @7
    Hey Spaz.
    This may help you understand. I forgot about your limited intellegence. Let’s say you accidentally punctured your girl friend with your pin dick and she became deflated. I don’t think a bill for Hurricane Sandy victims is the place to finance the repair of your inflatable girlfriend despite the merit it offers to barnyard animals everywhere.

  19. Another view says:

    Buddy – the 17 billion, 11 billion, and 5 billion you cite were not the problems with this bill. It’s all of the other junk that both parties add to these bills.

    “For example, it includes spending for fishery projects in Alaska, money to fix museum roofs in Washington, D.C., money to plant trees around the country, and money for a water resources priority study, among other measures.”

    What do those things have to do with Sandy relief? This is the new MO in politics – once a streamlined bill is proposed, it gets loaded with pork projects in order to obtain the requisite number of votes to pass. Often then need to do that just to get a sufficient number of votes from their own party. That’s why the federal bills are growing exponentially longer. BOTH PARTIES do it and it’s BS. They keep tacking crap onto the bills until they have the number of needed votes.

    FROM BUDDY:

    It is not new. It is as old as elective Legislatures. And as I wrote, what you believe is frivolous is somebody else’s job and vital project.

    Sticking expenditures in bills the way Congress works. It is as old as the nation. It happens all the time in Tallahassee, although the governor has a line-item veto and can remove them in Florida. Congress has never approved a line item veto.

    A relief bill is not the vehicle to use to fight this issue. It is too important to peoples’ lives. But some members of Congress — Marco Rubio is just one — can’t see past their own ideological noses.

    I wonder how Marco Rubio will feel when Congress holds up a relief bill for Florida for the same reasons. Oh, we know how he feels. He tried to block the relief for the Gulf Coast.

  20. Chaz Stevens, Genius says:

    @18

    Come Monday, like this coming Monday, you’ll be doing your best to impress me. Trying to get on my good side.

    Don’t waste your time.

  21. Florida Cracker says:

    Re your response to #19: Well said, Buddy.

  22. Ha Ha Ha says:

    http://pamshouseblend.firedoglake.com/2013/06/18/marco-rubios-bigotry-is-the-worst-kind/

    Marco Rubio’s Bigotry is the Worst Kind
    By: Alvin McEwen
    Tuesday June 18, 2013 7:26 am

    [Marco Rubio video #1]

    Remember the above sound bite from Florida Senator Marco Rubio from a while back? He was whining about being called “bigoted” because he is allegedly “pro- traditional marriage.”

    Of course this is how he feels about the ability to fire someone for being gay (hint – he supports it):

    [Marco Rubio video #2]

    Or adding gays to immigration legislation (hint – he is totally against it):

    “If this bill has in it something that gives gay couples immigration rights and so forth, it kills the bill. I’m done,” Rubio said Thursday during an interview on the Andrea Tantaros Show. “I’m off it, and I’ve said that repeatedly. I don’t think that’s going to happen and it shouldn’t happen. This is already a difficult enough issue as it is.”

    Marco Rubio opposes allowing gays to be married. He opposes adding gay couples to comprehensive immigration legislation. And he opposes protecting gays from job discrimination.

    My question is just at what point is it okay to entertain the notion that Rubio has a nasty bias against the gay community?

    Senator Rubio reminds me of when white racists attempted to push the false narrative that they weren’t “anti-black,” but “pro-white.” 

    No matter how noble or unassuming he attempts to make it sound, we are still talking about denying people rights simply because of who they are.

    And here I thought that was bigotry.